devotional

He Will Not Let Your Foot Be Moved

<A Song of Ascents.> I lift up my eyes to the hills– from where will my help come?
My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.
He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.
(Psa 121:1-8 NRS)

I wanted to share one of my favorites Psalms as a reminder of how God cares for you. In the midst of great trials be assured that God is your help. Look up to the hills. Cry out to God and He will not refuse his child. Your future may be bleak from where you stand, but look back from where you have come. Remember how God has always been there for you. Then you can stand on faith that He will see you through your present circumstances. (more…)

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Jeremiah Spared

“But I will deliver you on that day,” declares the LORD, “and you shall not be given into the hand of the men whom you dread. For I will certainly rescue you, and you will not fall by the sword; but you will have your own life as booty, because you have trusted in Me,” declares the LORD.” (Jeremiah 39:17-18 NASB)

This happened when the Babylonians sacked Jerusalem. For three years the Babylonians had surrounded the city. When they were finally able to breach the city walls, thousands were slaughtered, Solomon’s Temple was destroyed, its treasure taken as ransom, King Zedekiah’s eyes were gouged out, his children killed, and he was taken captive along with most of Jerusalem’s residents. But for Jeremiah, we have this strange account:

Now Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had given these orders about Jeremiah through Nebuzaradan commander of the imperial guard: “Take him and look after him; don’t harm him but do for him whatever he asks.” (Jer 39:11-12)

Look after him. We are not told why Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, would have such high regard for Jeremiah. A pagan king. A Jewish prophet. Jeremiah was protected. And this during the most tumultuous events in the history of the tiny nation of Judah. Thousands were slaughtered, the city burned, the temple destroyed, the people exiled.

God’s servants have always enjoyed divine protection as they faithfully do God’s work in the world. No harm shall befall them as they accomplish their divine appointments until that day when called into God’s presence they will hear: “Well done, good and faithful servant.” And this assurance of divine protection accompanies his servants wherever they may go, in whatever circumstances they may find themselves. The God who overshadows us under his mighty wings shall not allow harm to us. That is why David can say, “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil.”

When you are cognizant of a divine call, a commission by God to accomplish his divine purposes in this world, it does not mean that things will be easy; but that despite the difficulties and hardships of ministry, God will be there, faithfully protecting us through the storms of life. May we in turn confidently set about the work of ministry!

Micah 6:8

He has shown all you people what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8 TNIV)

In the midst of spiritual confusion, here’s an amazingly clear scripture. So often in my Christian walk I tend to lose focus because of the daily grind of ministry. In three short words, we have a nutshell of what God requires: justice, mercy, humility.

Taking a break from sermon preparation, I find this morning that I need God now more than ever. Not just for inspiration in preparing my weekly messages, and not just so I can be a better minister of His graces.

I just need Him.

I sometimes feel spiritually exhausted. Exhaustion comes from exertion. It comes from working hard at things. And there is so much to do as a Church Pastor that it is easy to get distracted. Distracted from the important things. I need God to remind me of the simple things. I need God like a breath of fresh air after I have been submerged for so long in the study of His Word.

Who would have thought that could become a distraction?

Knowing is not the same as doing. This verse of scripture reminds me of the practical aspect of ministry. And so, today, I don’t want to ‘exegete’ the text. I don’t want to delve into the historical background, the socio-cultural setting, the sitz im leben of Micah. I just want to listen to His voice telling me that He has shown me what He requires. I don’t want to just know this. I want to put it into practice: to act justly in my dealings with my fellow men, to love mercy as I forgive and care deeply for them, and to walk humbly with my God.